Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

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aptivaboy
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Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#1 Post by aptivaboy » Fri Dec 18, 2015 12:34 am

This is going to sounds perhaps odd, but please bear with me. With the plethora of Thinkpad replacement parts out there, and I mean a plethora, would it theoretically be possible to build a new Thinkpad from old but still unused parts? Has anyone done this? I've seen some posters make Frankenpads, for example, so many things are possible, I suppose.

Bob

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#2 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Dec 18, 2015 5:46 am

Yes.
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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#3 Post by aptivaboy » Fri Dec 18, 2015 10:56 pm

Okay, is there a master list of parts that is available for the most common Frankenpad upgrades so one could slowly acquire what was necessary?

Also, can an I-Series be Frankenpadded? That's my favorite Thinkpad series. I've seen references to R and T models being Frankenpadded, but not the I-Series. I ask because I have a line on some upper and lower 1400/2621 case halves. Sorry if this should be in the Legacy/I-Series section, and moderators please feel free to move it if it should be.

Bob

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#4 Post by ajkula66 » Fri Dec 18, 2015 11:23 pm

aptivaboy wrote:Okay, is there a master list of parts that is available for the most common Frankenpad upgrades so one could slowly acquire what was necessary?
No. Although the most common FrankenPad is of the T601 variety (T61 planar in a T60 chassis) there are other varieties...
Also, can an I-Series be Frankenpadded?
In a sense that the term is usually used, no. You can max out the i-series unit, but given their age there's not all that much that can be improved on them.
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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#5 Post by RealBlackStuff » Sat Dec 19, 2015 4:36 am

The reason why there aren't many I-series (and R30/R40) around, is that they were not made by IBM, but by Acer.
In other words: the lowest of the low quality, comparable to today's throw-away consumer laptops.
For the same reason you won't find many spare parts for them.

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#6 Post by aptivaboy » Sat Dec 19, 2015 3:29 pm

Sure, but I have a soft spot for the I-Series, my first laptop. I know it didn't seem cheap when I bought it, especially after the sticker shock for a first year teacher set in!

Bob

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#7 Post by micrex22 » Sun Dec 27, 2015 7:45 pm

RealBlackStuff wrote:The reason why there aren't many I-series (and R30/R40) around, is that they were not made by IBM, but by Acer.
In other words: the lowest of the low quality, comparable to today's throw-away consumer laptops.
For the same reason you won't find many spare parts for them.
I wouldn't go that far, IBM gave Acer specifications to abide by. For instance, on the 1400 series the four coloured buttons are a single strip of rubber that have had *independent* injections (similar to double-shot on keyboard key caps). The IBM ThinkPad badges are also superior to the later ones that were made as they are multi-layered plastic and not merely print-ons, so the dark areas don't 'rub off' like in all of the later badges. That's not cheap.
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... Series.png

While there are some 'acerisms' to them, such as ALi chipsets and their trademark copper-coloured paint, they're not terrible--and again, IBM mandated certain specifications. The keyboards are also far more pleasant to type on than a gummy keytronic 701C keyboard.

iSeries S30/S31 are excluded and were not made by Acer for IBM.

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#8 Post by pianowizard » Mon Dec 28, 2015 9:57 am

micrex22 wrote:iSeries S30/S31 are excluded and were not made by Acer for IBM.
The iSeries 1124 was also top-notch. I loved mine very much but had no use for it and so I forced myself to sell it. Incidentally, it may be the rarest Thinkpad model ever. Compared to the i1124, the S30 and S31 seem really easy to find!
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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#9 Post by micrex22 » Mon Dec 28, 2015 2:26 pm

pianowizard wrote:
micrex22 wrote:iSeries S30/S31 are excluded and were not made by Acer for IBM.
The iSeries 1124 was also top-notch. I loved mine very much but had no use for it and so I forced myself to sell it. Incidentally, it may be the rarest Thinkpad model ever. Compared to the i1124, the S30 and S31 seem really easy to find!
The S30/S31 are very easy to find in general (way easier and cheaper than a 701C or 360PE). I recently bought an S31 w/ piano black finish from Japan for $20 (shipping not included).
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... 30_lid.JPG

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#10 Post by thomase13 » Sun Jan 03, 2016 6:28 pm

aptivaboy wrote:Sure, but I have a soft spot for the I-Series, my first laptop. I know it didn't seem cheap when I bought it, especially after the sticker shock for a first year teacher set in!

Bob
I have to join in on the i Series love!!!
My first ThinkPad, and first laptop, also bought for a school originally.

I don't know about the internals, but it was sure a joy to use!
I love the keyboard on my T60p, but the keyboard on my 1998/1999 i1400/1500 machine is unsurpassed to this day. Acer or not, the quality was certainly higher in some respects, for instance the hard plastic lid with no mysterious black veneer that scratches off with the grazing of a fingernail like in the T series and many other later ThinkPads.
It had some very cool multimedia features like the independent CD player and volume knob on the front, which I still miss. A knob makes so much more sense for a volume control and yet is so rare to see these days! They are coming back on some car stereo systems though, so some people must be rediscovering their merit.
Last edited by thomase13 on Thu Jan 07, 2016 9:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#11 Post by aptivaboy » Thu Jan 07, 2016 2:11 pm

Concur heartily on the keyboard! That's what originally brought me back to wanting a Thinkpad, the keyboard. I've had three other laptops since then, either personally owned or supplied by work (HP and Dell), and their keyboards stink. The Thinkpad's keyboard was so good that its still the only laptop keyboard I've ever enjoyed typing on. In fact, it had better action than some full sized desktop keyboards.

The CD player controls on the front were a great idea for the I-Series, too. In the days before digital music, sitting on the plane listening to a CD without having to boot up the whole machine was a real plus.

I have a Thinkpad 1410 en route to me, but I'm still searching for a 2611-1450 like my original Thinkpad. They seem to be somewhat rare on the second hand market. Maybe its the larger screen that makes them more desirable.

Bob

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#12 Post by micrex22 » Sat Jan 09, 2016 4:34 pm

aptivaboy wrote:Concur heartily on the keyboard! That's what originally brought me back to wanting a Thinkpad, the keyboard. I've had three other laptops since then, either personally owned or supplied by work (HP and Dell), and their keyboards stink. The Thinkpad's keyboard was so good that its still the only laptop keyboard I've ever enjoyed typing on. In fact, it had better action than some full sized desktop keyboards.

The CD player controls on the front were a great idea for the I-Series, too. In the days before digital music, sitting on the plane listening to a CD without having to boot up the whole machine was a real plus.

I have a Thinkpad 1410 en route to me, but I'm still searching for a 2611-1450 like my original Thinkpad. They seem to be somewhat rare on the second hand market. Maybe its the larger screen that makes them more desirable.

Bob
They're rare because the majority have been recycled or discarded. Most early 90's IBM computers are unobtanium now; simply because most people don't see a value in them, so they're tossed with every other generic computer of the period. And since supply is limited, there can only be a decrease in the amount of machines in existence.

In fact, the 1400 I got for free out of the blue would have been tossed if it wasn't for a series of events that transpired:
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... Series.png

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Re: Can you build a "new" Thinkpad?

#13 Post by aptivaboy » Sun Jan 10, 2016 12:28 am

That's not a straight 1400 as those had Pentiums. Which model is that? Maybe a 14**? It looks to be in very nice shape. Congrats on obtaining her. I had a 1400 delivered the other day, just waiting on the power supply to boot her up.

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